and this is what we thought…
On 20th March, London Youth in partnership with Centre for London and UBS, launched their report Young People’s Capital of the World? Understanding and responding to young Londoners’ changing needs.
The report draws on research from five London boroughs – Barking & Dagenham, Enfield, Hackney, Haringey and Waltham Forest – and explores the aspirations and challenges of young people growing up in the capital.
Greenhouse Sports wholeheartedly agrees with the assertion that ‘young people must be seen as a vital asset to the capital now and into the future.’ With a quarter of all Londoners now under 25 years of age (a proportion that is set to grow), the city cannot afford to fail to invest properly in their development for the sake of our future.
Young People’s Capital of the World? highlights the significant challenges London faces: a growing young population, higher than average levels of child poverty, and deep cuts to local authority youth services budgets without sign of reversal. It reveals that young people growing up in disadvantaged communities were more likely to experience obesity and report poor wellbeing and mental health, and while they had high aspirations for their futures, there was a feeling that they did not possess the social networks, skills and support to achieve them.
Despite the recent success of London’s school system in narrowing the gap in academic attainment, these young people continue to face barriers to social mobility. The report highlights a ‘lack of access to services, support and opportunities to learn and have fun outside the classroom’ that are ‘just as important to their development and their ability to make a successful transition to adulthood.’ In the context of budget constraints, providing such services requires innovative solutions.
Greenhouse Sports works with over 7,500 young Londoners every year, in some of the capital’s most disadvantaged areas. Through leveraging part-funding from schools, to raise much larger sums from a diverse portfolio of donors, we are able to place highly qualified, inspirational coaches in schools, to work full-time delivering sport programmes. These programmes focus not only on improving the physical literacy and fitness of the young people we work with, but also, crucially, on developing a broader set of beneficial life skills to help young people thrive in school, and in later life.
To find out more about the impact we have on young Londoners click here.